Last of the Summer Wine : What did they live on?

What did they live on?

I always assumed that the three main characters were retired, allowing them time for all the adventures and hanging around the café etc. However, when the series started Peter Sallis was only about 52 as was Michael Bates, and Brian Wilde about 49 when he joined, so all well short of retirement age and a meagre state pension. And yes, I do realise they were not necessarily meant to be playing their real ages, but Sallis in particular looked too young to be retired, especially in the 1970's, so did they all have lucrative private pensions and big redundancy payments or were they all actually unemployed and were just never shown signing on?

Re: What did they live on?

I think they were supposed to be in their early/mid fifties when it started. Clegg mentions redundancy but it sounds more like early retirement. I'm guessing he had savings and a pension from his job, and he had his own home. Compo says Blamire has a pension and money tucked away.

Compo rarely, if ever, worked. But when he reached 65, he'd have been transferred from unemployment benefit to a basic state pension.

Re: What did they live on?

In The Last Pigeon and Post we get to see Compo's passport page. He was born in 1923.

This means when the pilot was made in 1972 the characters were 49 years old.

So it was not a series of 3 old age pensioners but initially 3 middle aged men.

I guess the characters were on benefits or pensions until they were old enough for the Old age pension.

It's that man again!!